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Writing Tips - The First Five Pages

Updated on August 31, 2017

Writing Tips -- The First Five Pages by Noah Lukeman

This book is filled with writing tips designed to help you stay out of the rejection pile. I ran across it by accident at the bookstore one day and thought it sounded interesting.

I found it informative, down to earth and an easy read. Mr. Lukeman states the facts for writers and would-be authors, like them or not. What could be better for a would be author?

According to him the first five pages of your manuscript can make or break your dreams of becoming a mainstream, published author. What aspiring author couldn't use some writing help?

Have I read it? For sure. Do I recommend it? You bet!

Keep reading to find out why...

The First Five Pages - Writing Tips You Need to Know

The First Five Pages: A Writer's Guide To Staying Out of the Rejection Pile
The First Five Pages: A Writer's Guide To Staying Out of the Rejection Pile

One of the first things an aspiring writer starts thinking about is rejection. Sometimes, even before her/she has written a single word. Mr. Lukeman's book is filled with writing tips that can help you reduce your chances of getting that feared rejection.


Every writer, no matter the genre, needs to read this book before approaching an agent or editor.

Don't end up on the road to rejection
Don't end up on the road to rejection

What's Inside

Writing Tips for all Writers

In the introduction, Mr. Lukeman explains why he wrote the book, the reaction to the book from some of his peers and how he intends it to help the struggling writer. He pulls no punches. I actually felt like he was sitting there explaining his thoughts to me in the no-nonsense manner I imagine agents to possess. Honestly, I usually skip introductions but I am glad I read this one. It made me hungry to read the rest.

The book is divided into three parts:

Part I -- Preliminary Problems

Part II -- Dialog

Part III - The Bigger Picture

He weaves industry facts, agent reactions, real-life anecdotes and his personal feelings as both an agent and author throughout the book. He starts with the actual presentation of your manuscript from an agents point of view. Font, style, paper type, spacing and much more can kill your manuscript before it's ever read. These first few pages help you see your "work of art" from a professional agents' prospective.

The entire book is full of insights. Every writer, no matter the genre, should read this book before ever approaching an agent or editor. It could save you (and the agent) a lot of time and heartache.

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Noah Lukeman, Writing Tips:

"There are no rules to assure great writing, but there are ways to avoid bad writing."


Gems of Wisdom for a Writer

Writing Tips at Your Fingertips

Though the title of the book is "The First Five Pages", Lukeman is quick to say that sometimes it's actually the first five sentences that can have a manuscript end up in the rejection pile. By closely looking at the first few pages of your book, the author is trying to get you to realize something all agents are readily aware of -- if you dialog is crappy on page 2, most likely it's crappy on page 99 and page 400.

Because agents can't begin to read every page of every manuscript they recieve, they have learned to look for signs in the first few pages (or even sentences) that sets the tone for the book. You have to grab an agent at the very beginning -- it's the only chance you get. "The First Five Pages" is such a good writer's reference, it has been made part of the curriculum at many universities and writing classes.

Mr. Lukeman's book is a favorite of mine. It's dogeared, has coffee stains and the binding is broken -- that's how often I refer to it when writing -- anything. It's a fountain of information, tips and do's as well as don'ts. It's a must read for me.

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The First Five Pages - Writing Tips
The First Five Pages - Writing Tips

Writing Tips to Make You a Better Writer

from the Agent/Editor Viewpoint

As Mr. Lukeman explains, agents and editors look for reasons to reject a manuscript. This book has been written "in the order of what I look for when trying to dismiss a manuscript".

Now that's a gift to writers -- any writer! This book tells you exactly what NOT to do if you want your manuscript published. He also goes to great length to give writers tips about a number of problems he sees daily. Learn from his experience!

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Your turn; Have you read it? - Writing Tips Book

What did you think?

If You've Read It, Rate It Please! - Did Your Enjoy Mr. Lukeman's Writing Tips?

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The First Five Pages by Noah Lukeman

Full of Writing Tips for Every Author Wanting to Get Published

I hate reviews that give an entire book away. I want to be enticed into reading the actual book. Reviews that read like Cliff's Notes are not my style.

My intention was to get you excited about reading "The First Five Pages". I hope it worked. :D

Have you read "The First Five Pages"? - Were the writing tips helpful?

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    • Scarlettohairy profile image

      Peggy Hazelwood 3 years ago from Desert Southwest, U.S.A.

      I wrote an article about this book to. Lukeman really offers great advice for writers who want to be published.

    • BuckHawkcenter profile image

      BuckHawkcenter 4 years ago

      The First Five Pages sounds like a great book for all writers! It's now on my must-read list. Thanks for the great review.

    • DecoratingEvents profile image

      DecoratingEvents 6 years ago

      @norma-holt: Thanks Norma! I will put that in my "Plans and Ideas" for 2012. Thanks for stopping by, always nice to hear from you! :D

    • norma-holt profile image

      norma-holt 6 years ago

      No, but thank you for drawing my attention to it. Would like to see you do more lenses like this. So informative and inspirational. Featured this on How to Write Better, Hugs

    • DecoratingEvents profile image

      DecoratingEvents 6 years ago

      @LisaAuch1: Write the book Lisa! I'd buy it!! (But read The First Five Pages" first!

    • LisaAuch1 profile image

      Lisa Auch 6 years ago from Scotland

      NO I have not, but I do intend to now, you always inspire me to keep on reading your pages, so I know this will be something I need to read! - just surfing for pleasure today however I will add this to my bookmarks folder, for my resources I find when I eventually decide to write that book!!!